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  Directed by
    None Listed
  Starring
  Specs
  • Widescreen 1.85:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  Languages
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  Subtitles
    English, Dutch
  Extras
  • Deleted scenes
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Audio commentary - by Ali G and Ricky C
  • Photo gallery
  • Behind the scenes footage

Ali G Indahouse

Universal/Universal . R4 . COLOR . 83 mins . MA15+ . PAL

  Feature
Contract

The popularity of Ali Gís television series has exploded, and as often happens this has resulted in a venture into the land of the silver screen.

Whilst there are quite a few laughs throughout the film, it will ultimately let down fans. The reason for this has nothing to do with the quality of the film itself Ė the problem is that the humour that made him so popular on television is simply not present. I am of course talking about the interviews on the show. The reactions of his guests to his totally unpredictable and off the wall comments and questions are really what gets the majority of the laughs. In Indahouse, this isnít present.

Regardless of this, there are probably enough laughs on offer to warrant a viewing if you like this kind of low brow humour. Most of the hilarity is based on crass sexual comments that at times can be very funny indeed, but at other times miss their mark. The style of humour is often different to his television series, but it is funny nevertheless.

The story is fairly one-dimensional, but perhaps not quite as simplistic as one would expect. Ali G is teaching a class of youngsters all about how to become a homeboy at the local Staines youth centre. With the centre facing closure due to cuts in government funding, Ali resolves to do something about this and keep it open for all the kiddies. He is manipulated by David Carlton (Charles Dance), an evil deputy Prime Minister, and is convinced to run as an MP for Staines so he can save the youth centre. Carlton is hoping to overthrow the government and become Prime Minister himself, and thus is using Ali with the expectation he will lose.

"He iz a criminal! And not even da good type wot deals drugs and does drive-bys!"

However, things donít quite go as planned. After Aliís political opponent in disgraced in public, Ali wins the election and becomes the local member for Staines. From hereon in the film adopts a somewhat annoying moral theme, and at the same times the laughs seem to dry up a bit.

The acting is nothing really to take note of, but then again with this style of film that is to be expected. Sacha Baron Cohen is great as his alter ego Ali G, and since the film revolves around him to such a great extent the other actors donít really earn much of a mention.

  Video
Contract

The video transfer presented here is in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1, and is 16x9 enhanced. The transfer appears to be exactly the same as the one on the earlier rental disc.

Iíll get the problems with the transfer out of the way first. As in the original rental disc transfer, by far the biggest problem is aliasing. Some of the instances here are some of the most noticeable I have ever seen. Another problem, though much less obvious than the aliasing, is grain on the image. It can become a little annoying at times, but is by no means unbearable. There are a few film artefacts spread throughout the film, but the vast majority are small and border on being negligible.

Now for the good points. The image is sharp throughout the film, and the detail is very good. The colours are also very nice, and are nice and bright without being over-saturated. The flesh tones are accurate, as is the shadow detail.

The disc is single sided and dual layered, with the layer change occurring at 61:45. It is very unobtrusive and placed at a very good spot. The only subtitles available are in English and Dutch, and the English set is quite accurate.

  Audio
Contract

The audio track available is English Dolby Digital 5.1. The audio is nothing special, but it does what it needs to do and is adequate for the cause. The dialogue is crisp and easy to understand at all times and synch never becomes an issue.

The surrounds are used to good effect during the action sequences and to support the score, but the mix is mostly centred on the front three speakers. The subwoofer is mainly reserved for use in the score.

  Extras
Contract

Quite an amusing set of extras are on offer here:

Audio Commentary - This is a very funny commentary by Ali G and his gangsta mate Ricky C (Martin Freeman). Donít expect an in-depth discussion on the finer points of the film Ė this is strictly an in character exhibition, and the duo do their best to deliver as many laughs as possible. Definitely worth listening to, but probably not more than once.

Featurette - Running for 11:42, this is a small video diary featuring Ali. There are some very funny moments here, and this is definitely worth a view.

Deleted Scenes - A total of 14 deleted scenes are available here, and are followed by some outtakes. They are presented in an aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and Dolby Digital 2.0 sound.

Talkiní Da Talk - Running for 2:18, this is a short selection of grabs from the film where Aliís slang is explained in more common English words.

Photo Gallery - A very small number of photos centring around Ali G posing for the camera.

Trailers - The original theatrical trailer plus two TV spots, one of which involves Aliís dog and is very funny.

  Overall  
Contract

An interesting debut for Ali on the big screen, true fans may ultimately be left feeling a little disappointed with this. The transfer is not too bad, but nowhere near reference quality. The extras are entertaining, and the commentary is very different to most you will come across. Worth a look.


  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=2135
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      And I quote...
    "Definitely worth a look for fans, but people who like a bit of thinking to do when they watch their films may be disappointed."
    - Robert Mack
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Sony DVP-NS300
    • TV:
          Sony 68cm
    • Receiver:
          Sony STR-DE475
    • Speakers:
          Sony
    • Centre Speaker:
          Sony
    • Surrounds:
          Sony
    • Subwoofer:
          Sony Active Superwoofer
    • Audio Cables:
          Standard RCA
    • Video Cables:
          standard s-video
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